Presume competence

On Tuesday, I wrote about how I struggle to find the balance between assisting my son out of love and interfering with my son’s development because I assume he can’t do something.

When I was growing up, words were important to me. I equated the ability to speak well and write well with being intelligent. This was long before the theory of multiple intelligences was popularized.

Many autistics struggle with spoken language. Because they don’t/can’t speak, people assume they are less intelligent. That is why, as part of Autism Acceptance Month, advocates are spreading this message: presume competence.

Here are some excellent books/articles written by autistics about being treated as less or completely discounted because they don’t use spoken language:

How Can I Talk if My Lips Don’t Move: Inside My Autistic Mind by Tito Rajarshi Mukhopadhyay

“Autism Speaks, I Want to Say” by Amy Sequenzia

An autistic plea for love and tolerance  on CNN iReport

The Right to Communicate

I would also recommend that you read “The 7 Tenets for Presuming Competence.”

I’m blogging about autism acceptance as part of the April A to Z Challenge.

2 thoughts on “Presume competence

  1. thanks for these sources:) I think that from my experience with my son entering the school system that sadly more teachers need to learn the rule “presume competence” when dealing with children. It always feels like an up hill battle with the simplest question I have for them is “Did you ask him?”


What do you have to say about that?

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s